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By Marjorie Agosin

Marjorie Agos?n has gathered in A Dream of sunshine and Shadow: pix of Latin American ladies Writers a wealth of very intimate, unique essays at the most eminent woman figures in Latin American literature from Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Costa Rica, Colombia, Ecuador, Uruguay, Argentina, and Brazil. a few of them are identified to the area: Gabriela Mistral and Violeta Parra for instance. a few haven't but been well-known even in the borders of their very own international locations. What all of those ladies have in universal is that each one creates her personal house in defiance of the boundaries imposed upon her via society and is ready to locate freedom via artistic mind's eye. And regardless of the deep prejudices the entire girls during this anthology confronted in the course of their lifetimes, every one used to be in a position to conquer stumbling blocks and declare a valid position as a author on a cultural degree. All of those writers are vitally eager about the issues girls face in Latin the United States. they've got participated in crucial methods within the historical past in their respective international locations, within the highbrow heritage of Latin the US, and whilst, their maximum contribution has been within the sharing of the non-public information of own tales, their very own and others.

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What does it mean to be a minor or major writer? How have these women managed to lead public and private lives through their creative work? What has been the historical legacy? How have they viewed themselves? And finally, is there a particular shape or form to the literary sensibility of women? One of the challenges of this book is to present the faces of these notable women vis-à-vis their literary production, not to read them as sanctified figures, but to show them as women of flesh and bone.

The biographies do not seek to foster unhealthy curiosity, or to mythicize the woman's situation, as has so often been the case. One need only recall how literary critics used the verses of the exceptional Uruguayan poet Delmira Agustini to fabricate a life story even less believable than her art, or how Gabriela Mistral was often dismissed because she was a rural schoolteacher. These essays show that in women's culture, there is a marked connection between private and public life. Viewed together, and not as isolated phenomena, these lives offer an integrated and vital vision of creative work.

Above all, they created a network of solidarity and shared reading with other women. This is a point I wish to emphasize: All the articles in this anthology suggest the very real possibility of a culture of sisterhood. That is, they allude to a powerful affirmation regarding feminine essence and its representatives, despite the fact that the term feminine is not precisely defined in the texts, nor is feminist ideology debated as a movement. It is important to recall that all the writers whose portraits make up this collection were vitally concerned with the problems faced by women, and the conditions that affected their collective destiny.

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